Google Faces Class-Action Discrimination Lawsuits


A class-action lawsuit is being brought against Google. Former engineer for the tech giant, James Damore is suing the company because he says they regularly discriminate against white men and conservatives.

The engineer was fired from Google for writing a 10-page memo that suggested women were “neurotic” and underemployed with the tech giant for “biological” reasons. The lawsuit was filed, five months after Damore was fired, at the Santa Clara County Superior Court.

Damore claims in his lawsuit that he was belittled, ostracized, and punished, along with a co-worker because he was conservative. He states that others at Google, who shared his views had long been “singled out, mistreated, and systematically punished and terminated.” Damore says the tech giant violated their legal rights.

The class-action, 161-page lawsuit also states that Google attempted to hire more women and others with a diverse, underrepresented backgrounds was a form of discrimination designed to incur anger and it is to the “detriment of caucasian and male employees.”

Chief Executive Sundar Pichai called Damore’s comments offensive and said they violated the Google Code of Conduct and would advance negative gender stereotypes in the workplace.

According to recode, Google’s employees are 31 percent women and 6 percent are underrepresented minorities. Pinterest employs the largest percentage of women at 45 percent and Apple employs the greatest percentage of underrepresented minorities at 23 percent, according to recode.

The case against the tech giant has brought about a debate over sexism in Silicon Valley. There is a “liberal-leaning tech industry’s tolerance for conservative workers and leaders, particularly during the presidency of Donald Trump.”

The class-action lawsuit has multiple complaints. Damore states that the Chief Financial Officer Ruth Porat “shamed departments for lacking gender parity and wrongly considered gender and racial preferences when making promotions.”

Damore said he brought his concerns to human resources. It was acknowledged that conservative workers did not feel a part of the company. That is when Damore wrote his infamous memo he titled, “Google’s Ideological Echo Chamber,” which led to multiple threats, according to Damore.

“Google’s Ideological Echo Chamber” criticizes the tech giant for mentoring and diversity programs that alienated conservatives. Within days of Damore posting his memo on an internal message board it was leaked to a technology blog. He was fired on Aug. 7, 2017, amid an uproar of employees who were offended by Damore’s statements.

The lawsuit even alleges that Google did not shield employees from harassment, who supported Trump. There are multiple examples of bias and the suggestion that the tech giant “frowns upon traditional heterosexual monogamy.”

Damore states that managers at the company tried to “institute a blacklist” to prevent conservatives from being hired. Allegedly the tech giant prevented a group of conservatives from visiting the Google campus, including conspiracy theorist Alex Jones.

The tech giant is also fighting a pay discrimination lawsuit brought against the company by four women. They claim the company systematically pays men more money than women for the same jobs. The memo, written by Damore, cited biological differences, such as greater levels of anxiety and lower stress tolerance, prevented the tech giant from hiring more women for engineering and leadership positions.

Google is looking forward to defending its actions in court, according to Snopes.

By Jeanette Smith


recode: James Damore has filed a class action lawsuit against Google, claiming it discriminates against white men
Snopes: Fired Google Engineer’s Suit Claims Reverse Discrimination
The New York Times: Google Memo Author Sues, Claiming Bias Against White Conservative Men

Images Courtesy of Thomas Hawk’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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